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Found 78 results

  1. The sister of Honduran President Juan Orlando Hernandez and five others died when the helicopter they were travelling in crashed on Saturday, the Honduran military said. Hilda Hernandez, 51, was a close advisor to her brother, who is embroiled in political turmoil in the wake of a Nov. 26 presidential election, which remains unresolved. She was previously the government?s communications secretary. Two reconnaissance helicopters were sent to comb the missing Eurocopter AS350 Ecureuil helicopter?s planned flight path from Toncontin international airport in capital city Tegucigalpa to Comayagua, some 50 miles (80 km) northwest, but because of inclement weather conditions land teams were sent in, the Honduran armed forces said in the statement. ?The remains of the aircraft were located and no survivors were found,? the armed forces said, adding it would investigate the causes of the crash. A government source, who asked not to be named said: ?The six people aboard the aircraft, including Hilda Hernandez have been found dead.? Honduras has been roiled by political instability following the presidential vote, with centre-left Salvador Nasralla, a TV star, trailing conservative incumbent Hernandez by 1.6 percentage points according to the official count. The tally has been questioned by the two main opposition parties and a wide swathe of the diplomatic corps.
  2. geo_embedgallery JOHANNESBURG: Pakistani wrestlers have secured six bronze medals in the Commonwealth Wrestling Championship 2017, Geo News reported Saturday. The wrestlers bagged bronze medals in their respective categories of the Greco-Roman wrestling competition. Bilal bagged bronze in 60 kilogramme category, Abdul Wahab in 63kg, Mudasser in 67kg, Ghulam Ghaus in 72kg, Ameer Ahmed in 87kg, and Ahmed Butt in 130kg. On the other hand, Abdul Rehman secured fourth position in the 77kg category, while Tayyab Raza secured fifth position in 97kg. The three-day event, which is being held at Carnival City Big Top Arena in Brakpan, South Africa, will conclude on December 17. Countries such as Canada, United Kingdom, India, Pakistan, Wales, Australia, New Zealand, and Nigeria are competing in the wrestling championship.
  3. Mourners pay their respects outside St Paul´s Cathedral after a memorial service in honour of the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire, in London, Britain, December 14, 2017. REUTERS LONDON: Survivors of a blaze that killed 71 people six months ago in the Grenfell Tower social housing block in west London wept during a multi-faith memorial service at St Paul?s Cathedral on Thursday attended by members of the royal family. Bereaved relatives held pictures of their loved ones as they commemorated Britain?s deadliest fire since World War Two, a tragedy that has profoundly shocked the nation. Fire broke out in the middle of the night on June 14 and quickly gutted the 24-storey building, which was home to a multi-ethnic community living in a poor area within one of London?s richest boroughs, Kensington and Chelsea. The disaster highlighted the area?s extreme disparities in living conditions between rich and poor and fueled a debate over why safety concerns voiced by tower residents before the fire had been ignored. The service reflected the multi-cultural character of the Grenfell community, with Christian and Muslim prayers and music from Middle Eastern, Caribbean and Western traditions. It also addressed the anger of many survivors over what they perceive as the neglect of their community before and after the fire. A majority of the hundreds of people displaced by the fire are still staying in hotels because suitable permanent homes have not been provided yet. ?Today we ask why warnings were not heeded, why a community was left feeling neglected, uncared for, not listened to,? Graham Tomlin, Bishop of Kensington, told the congregation. ?Today we hold out hope that the public inquiry will get to the truth of all that led up to the fire at Grenfell Tower ... and we trust that the truth will bring justice.? Police are investigating the fire and say charges may be brought against individuals or organizations. A separate public inquiry is under way on the causes of the fire and the authorities? response. "Remember me" Prime Minister Theresa May, opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, London Mayor Sadiq Khan, heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles and his sons Prince William and Prince Harry were among those attending the service along with bereaved families and firefighters who took part in the rescue effort on the night. The devastation inside Grenfell Tower was such that it took police and forensic scientists several months to recover and identify all human remains. The final death toll was 53 adults and 18 children. The service began when a white banner bearing a large green heart emblazoned with the word ?Grenfell? was carried through the congregation to the pulpit by a Catholic priest and Muslim cleric from the area around the charred tower. Later, a young Syrian musician played a mournful tune on the oud, an instrument commonly played in the Middle East and parts of Africa, where many Grenfell residents had ties. A choir of Muslim schoolgirls performed a song called ?Inshallah?, and survivor Nadia Jafari, who escaped from the tower but lost her elderly father Ali, read a poem called ?Remember Me? by the 13th century Persian poet and scholar Rumi. The service also included a rendition of Leonard Cohen?s ?Hallelujah? performed by a Caribbean-style steel band, and a performance of ?Somewhere? from the musical ?West Side Story.? Schoolchildren from the Grenfell area scattered green hearts, a symbol of solidarity with the victims and survivors, around the cathedral?s altar.
  4. Workers stand on the roof of the burnt out remains of the Grenfell tower in London, Britain, October 16, 2017. Photo: Reuters LONDON: Survivors of a fire that killed at least 71 people six months ago in the Grenfell Tower social housing block in west London will join firefighters and members of the royal family at a national memorial service at St Paul?s Cathedral today. The blaze broke out in the middle of the night on June 14 and quickly gutted the 24-storey building, which was home to a close-knit, multi-ethnic community living in a poor area within one of London?s richest boroughs, Kensington and Chelsea. The disaster profoundly shocked Britain, highlighting extreme disparities in living conditions between rich and poor and fuelling a debate over whether disdain for social housing residents had played a part. ?Hosting this service at St Paul?s Cathedral, an iconic venue in London, recognises the significance of this tragedy both for the local community and the wider nation,? said Graham Tomlin, the bishop of Kensington, ahead of the service. 'Shame on you': survivors of tower block fire berate London council Kensington's previous leader Nicholas Paget-Brown resigned following his decision to abruptly suspend the last council meeting on June 29 Prime Minister Theresa May, opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles and his sons Prince William and Prince Harry are all expected to attend the service. But members of Kensington and Chelsea council, which owns Grenfell Tower and has been widely criticised for its actions before and after the fire, have been asked not to attend because survivors and bereaved families do not want them there. ?I totally respect that,? council leader Elizabeth Campbell told the BBC earlier this week. ?We will be paying our own respects in the council with a minute?s silence.? Hundreds of people displaced by the fire, both those who lived in the tower itself and others who lived in nearby buildings, are still staying in hotels six months later as the council has so far been unable to permanently rehouse them. Silence over whether Grenfell Tower materials passed safety test The test used to assess combined materials must be commissioned from a government approved independent testing agency Campbell has defended the council, saying it was doing everything it could to secure quality homes for affected families, but members of the Grenfell community who have spoken to media have complained of a slow, confusing process. ?I am sorry. I?m sorry that they?re in hotels,? said Campbell. Police are conducting a criminal investigation into the fire and have said that charges may be brought against individuals or organisations. A separate public inquiry is under way on the causes of the fire and the authorities? response.
  5. Workers stand on the roof of the burnt out remains of the Grenfell tower in London, Britain, October 16, 2017. Photo: Reuters LONDON: Survivors of a fire that killed at least 71 people six months ago in the Grenfell Tower social housing block in west London will join firefighters and members of the royal family at a national memorial service at St Paul?s Cathedral today. The blaze broke out in the middle of the night on June 14 and quickly gutted the 24-storey building, which was home to a close-knit, multi-ethnic community living in a poor area within one of London?s richest boroughs, Kensington and Chelsea. The disaster profoundly shocked Britain, highlighting extreme disparities in living conditions between rich and poor and fuelling a debate over whether disdain for social housing residents had played a part. ?Hosting this service at St Paul?s Cathedral, an iconic venue in London, recognises the significance of this tragedy both for the local community and the wider nation,? said Graham Tomlin, the bishop of Kensington, ahead of the service. 'Shame on you': survivors of tower block fire berate London council Kensington's previous leader Nicholas Paget-Brown resigned following his decision to abruptly suspend the last council meeting on June 29 Prime Minister Theresa May, opposition Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles and his sons Prince William and Prince Harry are all expected to attend the service. But members of Kensington and Chelsea council, which owns Grenfell Tower and has been widely criticised for its actions before and after the fire, have been asked not to attend because survivors and bereaved families do not want them there. ?I totally respect that,? council leader Elizabeth Campbell told the BBC earlier this week. ?We will be paying our own respects in the council with a minute?s silence.? Hundreds of people displaced by the fire, both those who lived in the tower itself and others who lived in nearby buildings, are still staying in hotels six months later as the council has so far been unable to permanently rehouse them. Silence over whether Grenfell Tower materials passed safety test The test used to assess combined materials must be commissioned from a government approved independent testing agency Campbell has defended the council, saying it was doing everything it could to secure quality homes for affected families, but members of the Grenfell community who have spoken to media have complained of a slow, confusing process. ?I am sorry. I?m sorry that they?re in hotels,? said Campbell. Police are conducting a criminal investigation into the fire and have said that charges may be brought against individuals or organisations. A separate public inquiry is under way on the causes of the fire and the authorities? response.
  6. An Ecuadorean court on Wednesday sentenced Vice President Jorge Glas to six years in jail after finding him guilty of receiving bribes from Brazilian construction company Odebrecht in return for handing the scandal-ridden firm state contracts. A close ally of leftist ex-President Rafael Correa, Glas served as Correa?s vice president from 2013 and retained the position under current President Lenin Moreno. But Moreno, who has largely broken from Correa, suspended Glas in August, accusing him of not being a team player. An Ecuadorean judge in October then ordered pre-trial detention for Glas as part of the investigation into Odebrecht. The public prosecutor?s office accused him of pocketing a roughly $13.5-million (£10 million) bribe from Odebrecht via his uncle. ?Glas constructed, with (former Odebrecht executive) Jose Conceicao Santos, the awarding of public contracts in return for payment,? Judge Edgar Flores said on Wednesday as he read the decision. Glas, a 48-year-old electrical engineer, has been accused by senior members of Correa?s government of corruption while serving as strategic sectors minister and vice president. His lawyer slammed the decision as ?unjust? and vowed to appeal. Glas? downfall highlights how fallout from the massive Odebrecht corruption scandal has continued to ripple across South America. The company, which has admitted to paying bribes to win contracts in a number of countries, has paid $3.5 billion in settlements in the United States, Brazil and Switzerland. Odebrecht allegedly paid $33.5 million in bribes to secure contracts in Ecuador. The opposition says that Correa?s government was slow to investigate, although he rejects that.
  7. Photo: File KARACHI: The Sindh home department extended on Tuesday for six more months the ban on protest rallies and gatherings in the Red Zone of the metropolis. Section 144 prohibits public gatherings of five or more people and public displays of weapons. According to a notification, Section 144 has been imposed in specific areas of Karachi. The decision has been taken to ensure the security of people. The notification further stated that the present law and order situation and implementation of National Action Plan warrants the imposition of a ban on the following activities to avoid any untoward incident: 1) Display of arms 2) Guards wearing civil clothes except for personnel from law enforcement agencies 3) Security guards wearing uniforms having resemblance with the uniform of police and other law enforcement agencies 4) Private vehicles having a resemblance to vehicles of police and other law enforcement agencies
  8. Photo: ISPR RAWALPINDI: The Frontier Corp apprehended six terrorists of the banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) during different intelligence-based operations (IBOs) in Balochistan on Monday, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said. Explosives, arms and ammunition including anti-personal mines, detonators, communications equipment were recovered during the IBOs. Photo: ISPR Explosives, arms and ammunition including anti-personal mines, detonators, communications equipment were recovered during the IBOs conducted in Rustam Darbar, Dera Bugti, and Killi Deba areas of the province. In Punjab, Pakistan Rangers Punjab along with the police and intelligence agencies apprehended 12 terrorist facilitators during IBOs conducted in Attock, Rawalpindi, and Sargodha, the army's media wing reported. Two wanted terrorists killed in Swat security operation : ISPR Two facilitators of the killed terrorists were also apprehended during the operation Earlier this month, security forces conducted an intelligence-based operation in Swat's Jahan Abad area and killed two wanted terrorists. The operation was conducted after intelligence agencies received accurate information regarding movement of terrorists, who were crossing over from Afghanistan and entering Swat valley. "Due to effective security in place both were traced in the hideout and killed during an encounter," added the military's statement. Two facilitators of the killed terrorists were also apprehended during the operation.
  9. Umar Akmal burst onto the international cricket circuit oozing class, and drawing the highest praise from experts. But, for someone who was initially dubbed as the next big thing in the Pakistani team, Akmal has surely failed to live up to the billing. A series of inconsistent performances saw him lose the national contract with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB). And, earlier this year, his name alongside fast bowler Mohammad Sami also cropped up in the alleged spot-fixing case in the Pakistan Super League (PSL). © Reuters But, the troublesome times for Akmal don't seem to end there. Struggling to mark his return in international cricket, Akmal has been working hard and his contribution for Lahore Whites in the National T20 Cup is a testimony to that. However, it wasn't enough for the social media trolls who began circulating the rumour of his apparent death. New post (Umar Akmal declared dead on social media, Pakistani cricketer assures fans ...) has been published on - https://t.co/piib7uXS4f pic.twitter.com/3BaUgR5RuX — VisionMp (@VisionMpbhopal) November 29, 2017 Morphed images of the Pakistani cricketer thronged social media where the trolls claimed that he died during the recent riots in Islamabad. Many fans fell prey to the fake news and expressed their shock over Akmal's alleged death. Allhamdulillah I am safe n perfectly fine in Lahore all news coming from social media is fake And Insha Allah I will join #National20cup2017 #Semifinale — Umar Akmal (@Umar96Akmal) November 27, 2017 And, after a lot of hue and cry, the Pakistani cricketer was compelled to break his silence and quash the rumours once and for all. Taking to Twitter, Akmal shared a short video to assure his fans that he was ok. The right-hander also claimed that he will be taking part in the National T20 Cup final against Lahore Blues on Thursday. pic.twitter.com/rmhfTOjE4N — Umar Akmal (@Umar96Akmal) November 28, 2017 The 27-year-old has not played for Pakistan since the ODI against Australia in Adelaide in January this year. He is currently out of the national side following his outburst against coach Mickey Arthur. Akmal was later found guilty of breaching three clauses of the player's code of conduct by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB).
  10. German police on Tuesday arrested six Syrian refugees suspected of preparing a terror attack. Photo: AFP file FRANKFURT: German police on Tuesday arrested six Syrian refugees suspected of preparing a terror attack, prosecutors said. The suspects, aged 20 to 28, were detained in dawn raids that saw some 500 police officers swoop on residences in the cities of Kassel, Essen, Hanover and Leipzig. The men are accused of belonging to ?the foreign terrorist group?, Christian Hartwig, a spokesman for the Frankfurt prosecutor?s office, said in a statement. ?The accused are also suspected of preparing an attack on a public target in Germany using weapons or explosives,? Hartwig said. The investigators believe the men had not yet finalised their attack plan, he added. The suspects arrived in Germany between December 2014 and September 2015 at the height of Europe?s migrant crisis. Prosecutors declined to give further details about the case, saying the inquiry was still ongoing. German security forces have been on high alert to the threat of terrorist attacks, particularly after a truck rampage claimed by terrorist killed 12 people in Berlin last December. Last month, police arrested a 19-year-old Syrian suspected of preparing a terrorist attack in the country using ?powerful explosives?. Domestic security officials estimate there are some 10,000 radical terrorists in Germany, with roughly 1,600 among them suspected of being capable of violence.
  11. Pictured is the ill-fated car. ? Geo News MURREE: Six members of a family died after a car plunged into a ravine near Murree Sunday evening, rescue sources said. The incident occurred in Bangara village, rescue sources said, adding the deceased included four minors. They were identified as Haji Asif, his son Faisal Abbasi, and four grandsons. The bodies were shifted to a local hospital for further formalities.
  12. Supporters of the Congolese main opposition party Union for Democracy and Social Progress (UDPS) display a bullet they say was used by riot-police during clashes in the Limete municipality of Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, March 28, 2017. REUTERS/Robert Carrubba/Files1 KIKWIT: Police in the Democratic Republic of Congo Saturday fired on an opposition rally, injuring six protesters denouncing the extended rule of President Joseph Kabila, a lawmaker said. "The police fired on our militants, injuring six of them, even though we had permission to hold our meeting," said Delly Sesanga MP, president of Envol, a member of the opposition coalition. He claimed that he himself had been "assaulted and kidnapped for more than three hours" during the incident in Kenge, east of the capital. However, according to a statement by the national police, only one protester was wounded in the head, and that was caused by stones thrown by other demonstrators. The police "fired in the air to disperse a crowd that had not been approved by Kenge City Hall", said Emery Kaputa Vita, deputy governor of Kwango Province. The opposition coalition and other citizens' movements are against the vote schedule published by the electoral commission in the DR Congo. It predicts that the presidential election will be held on December 23, 2018, extending Joseph Kabila's term as head of the country by a year. Kabila was scheduled to have stepped down in December 2016 after a constitutional maximum of two terms in office. Those against President Kabila's stay in power are mobilising force his departure by December 31, 2017, at the latest. On Thursday, the European Union, the United States, Switzerland, and Canada expressed "concern" at the state of freedoms of expression and assembly in the DR Congo, following a day of protest and a crackdown by security forces. The opposition are considering a "peaceful demonstration" in Kinshasa on November 28, according to a letter seen by AFP.
  13. Syrians view the scene of destruction following reported shelling by Syrian government forces in the rebel-held town of Douma, eastern Ghouta region, Syria, November 17, 2017. AFP/Hamza Al-Ajweh DOUMA: Shelling by the Syrian regime on the rebel-held area of Eastern Ghouta near Damascus Friday killed at least 19 civilians, among them six children, a monitor said. The deaths came amid an escalating cycle of tit-for-tat attacks between regime forces and rebels holding the enclave on the Syrian capital's eastern outskirts. Rebel shelling on Friday killed three civilians. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, 52 civilians have been killed since Tuesday, most of them in Eastern Ghouta, which has been besieged since 2013 and where humanitarian conditions are dire. Thirteen people ? including five children and three emergency workers ? were killed in regime shelling and air strikes in Douma, the Eastern Ghouta area's main town, Observatory chief Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP. Elsewhere in Eastern Ghouta, another six people were killed in regime air strikes, the monitor said. On Tuesday, the Ahrar al-Sham group ? that has positions in Harasta ? attacked a regime military base in the area, which is supposed to be a "de-escalation zone" under a deal between Russia, Iran, and Turkey to ease the level of violence. The fighting on that front has left at least 37 dead on the regime side, according to the Observatory, a toll the regime has not confirmed. Abdel Rahman said "dozens" of rebels were also killed. In a hospital in Douma, doctors and nurses were treating a continuous flow of the wounded as the sounds of crying children echoed through the facility, an AFP correspondent said. An elderly man with greying hair sought to calm a little girl in tears, her clothes covered in blood, while the bodies of three children killed in the strikes lay inert on a metal table. Two other injured children sat on a bench, silent, their eyes wide, apparently still in shock. One had a bandaged foot. Another wounded person had a bandage wrapped around his head, but blood had soaked through it. On a white hospital bed, Abu Hisham's face contorted in pain as he called out to his wife and children, who had been killed. "Iman, where are the children?" he cried. In retaliation for the latest deadly Ghouta shelling, rebels fired rockets into Damascus on Friday, killing three civilians, the same source said. Six were killed the previous day, including Syria's national karate coach Fadel Radi, who died of his wounds after being hit by shrapnel as he left his Damascus sports club, the state-run SANA news agency reported. More than 330,000 people are estimated to have been killed in the Syrian war, which began in 2011 as the regime brutally crushed anti-government protests. Millions have been displaced.
  14. LAHORE: Ahead of the expected West Indies tour to home in coming days, Pakistan?s hope of maintaining the in-form bowling unit have dealt a major blow, as fast bowler Usman Shinwari is ruled out from playing international cricket for at least next six months, sources informed Geo News. Reportedly, the medical camp of Pakistan Cricket Board has informed the team management that Shinwari may take next four to six months to recover from the injury. The pacer is facing a serious stress fracture of the back. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is still waiting for a final word from Cricket West Indies (CWI) on the proposed tour of Pakistan by the West Indies team for a series of three T20Is. PCB awaits final word from West Indies on proposed tour CWI is looking for reciprocation from PCB for the tour and PCB has suggested two different options Meanwhile, a source in PCB has confirmed to Geo.tv that PCB has sent the proposed itinerary and the related plans to the CWI and the board is now waiting for the final approval. ?We are hoping for a reply from them by Wednesday,? said the source. A joint statement from PCB and CWI had stated that Cricket West Indies and Pakistan Cricket Board were advancing discussions that would see the West Indies team play three T20 matches against Pakistan in Lahore in late November.
  15. LAHORE: At least six people have been killed and 37 injured in incidents resulting from heavy smog in several cities across Punjab, Geo News learnt Friday. Five people were killed in Kamonki after a passenger van collided with a bus on Friday. The incident left another nine wounded. A man was killed and five others were injured in a truck-bus collision on the motorway near Jalalpur Bhattian. Smog affects country's power distribution system Four nuclear power plants, Chashma I-IV, have been shut down in addition to four other power plants producing 4,250mw of electricity A passenger van crashed into a truck in Sheikhupura, leaving 15 people injured. All the wounded belonged to the same family. In Lahore, four people were brought to hospital, who were injured in a car crash. Four others were hurt after an oil tanker ran over a motorbike before bumping into a truck in Arifwala. Health issues The thick fog blanketing large parts of the province has disrupted routine life by causing adverse effects on citizens' health. Many people have been forced to stay indoors, especially the elderly citizens, as they face difficulty in breathing, skin and eye irritation, and coughing problem. Flight disruption The dense haze caused disruption of three international flights, which were en route to Faisalabad. The flights were diverted to Lahore because of less visibility. Smog: What role can you play? A guide on steps people can take to combat smog The smog has also been triggering closure of multiple sections of the motorway, primarily during nighttime. According to motorway authorities, the visibility has dropped down to only 25-50 metres at various places from Lahore to Bhera. Officials have advised citizens to be careful while driving on highways and motorway, and strongly recommended use of fog lamps. Visibility in different Punjab cities, according to the Met Office: Jhang 10 metres Faisalabad 30 metres Multan 50 metres Sahiwal 200 metres Lahore 300 metres Khanpur, Nurpur Thal 500 metres
  16. LAHORE: A Pakistan court on Wednesday ruled against a man who had remarried without his first wife's permission in a landmark verdict that was applauded by women's right activists. Judicial magistrate Ali Jawwad Naqvi announced the verdict in a Lahore lower court, ordering the man to serve a six-month jail term and pay a fine of Rs200,000. It was the first time a court in Pakistan had sided with the woman under a 2015 family law, and followed a petition by Ayesha Bibi, who said her husband, Shahzad Saqib, had wed for a second time without her approval. "To get married without your first wife's permission is breaking the law," she had argued in her appeal. The court rejected the man's argument that he did not need her permission because his religion allowed him four marriages. The Council of Islamic Ideology (CII), a body that advises the government on the compatibility of laws with Islam, has often criticised the demand for a wife's written approval if her husband wants to remarry. Chaos ensues as wife crashes husband?s third wedding ceremony in Jhelum The couple, Zahid and Ayesha, started quarreling after the wife confronted her husband. But the CII recommendations are not legally binding. Women rights activists applauded the ruling. "It is encouraging that a wronged woman has used this law to complain to the court. The decision augurs well for women's empowerment," Romana Bashir, who heads a non-governmental organisation, Peace and Development Foundation, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation. Fauzia Viqar, chair of the Punjab Commission on the Status of Women, a body promoting women's rights, welcomed the verdict as a way to strengthen women's hand in the society. "The decision sets an important precedent. It will encourage women to take up their case with the courts. It will create awareness among people, in general, and women, in particular. Wronged women using this law will lead to their empowerment," said Viqar. The husband has the right to challenge his conviction in the Lahore case, though it was not clear if he would do so. On Sunday, a woman crashed her husband?s third wedding ceremony in Jhelum, Punjab. Chaos ensued in the ceremony in Sanghoi area, after the groom?s second wife confronted him and started quarrelling. ?He was marrying for the third without my permission,? the second wife, Ayesha, claimed, adding that she married Zahid in 2015. The woman maintained her husband had kept her in dark regarding his first marriage too.
  17. BERLIN/PRAGUE: Strong winds battered northern and central Europe on Sunday, killing at least six people in Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic, with authorities watching for oil leaks from a huge freighter that ran aground in the North Sea. Four victims in Poland and the Czech Republic were killed by falling trees. The storm also knocked out power to thousands of Czechs and Poles, and rail traffic in large parts of northern Germany remained suspended after heavy damage from fallen trees. Winds reached more than 100 kph (60 miles per hour) in several parts of the Czech Republic and topped out at 180 kph on Snezka, at 1,602 metres the country?s highest mountain, Czech Television reported. The two victims in Germany included a 63-year-old German man who drowned at a campsite in Lower Saxony as a result of a storm surge, and a woman whose motorboat overturned in the state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, German media reported. The ?Glory Amsterdam,? a 225-metre long freighter ran aground on the German island of Langeoog, and authorities were keeping a close watch for any signs of oil leaks. The ship?s crew of 22 were safe, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reported. The freighter was not carrying any cargo, but had 1,800 tonnes of heavy oil and 140 tonnes of marine diesel on board as fuel, it quoted local authorities as saying. In Germany, railway operator Deutsche Bahn cited what it called ?significant damage? on key routes, and said rail traffic on many routes in northern and central Germany would remain suspended until Monday. The decision left thousands of travellers stranded and cut rail access to cities such as Bremen, Hamburg, Berlin, Hanover and Kiel. Deutsche Bahn restored some service late on Sunday and provided sleeping cars at stations for stranded passengers. Hamburg saw widespread flooding in the inner city area, including the area around the new Elbphilharmonie symphony hall. The winds felled trees in the Czech Republic, with one man dying after being hit on a sidewalk in a town in the north of the country and one woman killed by a tree in a wooded area, media reported. The weather delayed or halted traffic on several railway lines and slowed road traffic, with a fallen tree blocking one highway just outside of the capital, Prague, the website of newspaper Mlada Fronta Dnes reported. Prague Zoo closed because of the winds, but Prague Airport was running without problems, newspaper Lidove Noviny?s website reported. The winds also hit Poland, damaging a pipeline at Poland?s liquefied natural gas terminal in the port of Swinoujscie. They caused a small leak but no greater damage, according to a spokesman for the state gas pipeline operator, Gaz-System.
  18. A US drone strike has killed six suspected Daesh militants in central Yemen. Photo: AFP file. ADEN: A US drone strike has killed six suspected Daesh militants in central Yemen, security sources said Wednesday. The strike in Bayda province would be the second known US strike against Daesh in Yemen. The first came just over a week ago, when the US military said it had killed dozens of terrorists at Daesh training camps in the same province. The US is the only country known to operate armed drones over Yemen, but its previous known strikes have targeted Al-Qaeda. Daesh has however risen to prominence in the country's civil war. Washington has intensified its drone war against Yemen-based terrorists since US President Donald Trump took power in January. A Saudi-led coalition, which entered Yemen's conflict in March 2015 to prop up the government of President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi against the Iran-backed Huthis. The Yemen war has killed 8,673 people and wounded 58,636 since 2015, including many civilians, according to the United Nations. Another 2,100 have died of cholera this year. The top UN aid official arrived in Yemen Tuesday on a five-day trip aimed at drawing attention to what his organisation has called the world's top humanitarian crisis.
  19. Mahendra Singh Dhoni had already established himself as one of the deadliest finishers and successful captains in international cricket. But, on 2 April 2011, those two unique qualities combined together and etched Dhoni's name in the history books. The moment he smashed Sri Lankan seamer Nuwan Kulasekara for a towering six in the 49th over to end India's 28-year wait for a World Cup title at the Wankhede stadium will always remain one of the most iconic moments in the history of Indian cricket. But, that was a long time ago. A time when Dhoni's willow breathed fire. A time when the Indian fans could lean back and count on India's No. 1 finisher to get them over the line. Sadly, that era is far gone. Reuters Today, Dhoni is 36 and no longer the finisher he once used to be. The Jharkhand cricketer has traded the finisher's role for the one of a consolidator. But, that doesn't mean he's not important or influential anymore. If the recent run of Team India is anything to go by, Dhoni has noticeably excelled in his new profile. But, then again, who doesn't miss those big hoicks over deep midwicket, right? Well, Dhoni might have mellowed down in the game, but when he's training in the nets, the former Indian captain is still seen smashing a few out of the park. A similar incident came to fore during Team India's net session ahead of the first ODI against New Zealand in Mumbai. In a video shared by the BCCI on Twitter, Dhoni can be seen stepping down the track and hammering the bowler for a massive six - similar to the one that earned India their second World Cup title. When @msdhoni hits a big one at the Wankhede Stadium, it invariably takes us back to that famous six in 2011. pic.twitter.com/UGZkvpHWJJ — BCCI (@BCCI) October 20, 2017 The BCCI captioned the video, "When @msdhoni hits a big one at the Wankhede Stadium, it invariably takes us back to that famous six in 2011." After beating India's Board President's XI by 33 runs in their second warm-up game, New Zealand will look to do just the same in their opening ODI enconter with India on October 22. Team India, who recently defeated Australia 4-1 in the ODI series, will be looking to continue their winning run against the Kiwis and reclaim the No. 1 spot in the ICC ODI rankings, which is currently held by South Africa following their win against Bangladesh following AB de Villiers' blistering hundred.
  20. Mahendra Singh Dhoni had already established himself as one of the deadliest finishers and successful captains in international cricket. But, on 2 April 2011, those two unique qualities combined together and etched Dhoni's name in the history books. The moment he smashed Sri Lankan seamer Nuwan Kulasekara for a towering six in the 49th over to end India's 28-year wait for a World Cup title at the Wankhede stadium will always remain one of the most iconic moments in the history of Indian cricket. But, that was a long time ago. A time when Dhoni's willow breathed fire. A time when the Indian fans could lean back and count on India's No. 1 finisher to get them over the line. Sadly, that era is far gone. Reuters Today, Dhoni is 36 and no longer the finisher he once used to be. The Jharkhand cricketer has traded the finisher's role for the one of a consolidator. But, that doesn't mean he's not important or influential anymore. If the recent run of Team India is anything to go by, Dhoni has noticeably excelled in his new profile. But, then again, who doesn't miss those big hoicks over deep midwicket, right? Well, Dhoni might have mellowed down in the game, but when he's training in the nets, the former Indian captain is still seen smashing a few out of the park. A similar incident came to fore during Team India's net session ahead of the first ODI against New Zealand in Mumbai. In a video shared by the BCCI on Twitter, Dhoni can be seen stepping down the track and hammering the bowler for a massive six - similar to the one that earned India their second World Cup title. When @msdhoni hits a big one at the Wankhede Stadium, it invariably takes us back to that famous six in 2011. pic.twitter.com/UGZkvpHWJJ — BCCI (@BCCI) October 20, 2017 The BCCI captioned the video, "When @msdhoni hits a big one at the Wankhede Stadium, it invariably takes us back to that famous six in 2011." After beating India's Board President's XI by 33 runs in their second warm-up game, New Zealand will look to do just the same in their opening ODI enconter with India on October 22. Team India, who recently defeated Australia 4-1 in the ODI series, will be looking to continue their winning run against the Kiwis and reclaim the No. 1 spot in the ICC ODI rankings, which is currently held by South Africa following their win against Bangladesh following AB de Villiers' blistering hundred.
  21. Egyptian soldiers in an armored vehicle in the northern Sinai, May 2013. CAIRO: Armed militants killed at least six Egyptian soldiers at a military post in the Sinai Peninsula, the army said, in an attack later claimed by Islamic State. Attacks targeting security forces have been common since Egypt?s president Mohamed Mursi was ousted in 2013 following mass protests against his rule. The Egyptian army said in a statement earlier on Friday six soldiers were killed when ?armed terrorists? attacked a checkpoint in Arish city with grenades and firearms. Daesh said in a statement released by the group?s official news agency Amaq later on Friday that at least 14 ?apostates? were killed, including one policeman. The group also said tens were injured in the attack. Egypt is fighting an insurgency against militants affiliated with Daesh in the Sinai Peninsula where hundreds of security forces have been killed since Mursi?s ouster.
  22. LONDON: Liverpool forward Sadio Mane could be out of action for up to six weeks after picking up a hamstring injury on international duty, the club said on Tuesday. A statement on the club's website said he was substituted just before the end of Senegal´s 2-0 World Cup qualifying win over the Cape Verde Islands on Saturday. "It has now been confirmed that he picked up an injury during that fixture that could keep him out of action for up to six weeks," the statement said. Mane's absence is a huge blow for Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp after the forward scored three goals in four Premier League appearances this season. The injury is especially badly timed for Klopp with Liverpool's bitter rivals Manchester United visiting Anfield on Saturday. Liverpool are already seven points behind United in the Premier League and can´t afford to drop points against Jose Mourinho´s in-form United. Sane's value to Liverpool has been immense since his move from Southampton in 2016, but he has struggled to stay fit. He scored 13 Premier League goals last season despite missing the whole of January due to the Africa Cup of Nations. Liverpool won just once in seven matches in all competitions during his time away with Senegal. Mane tore the meniscus in a knee during April's Merseyside derby against Everton which prematurely ended his season and required surgery. They coped better that time, with five wins, two draws and a defeat. Having worked hard to get back to fitness this term, Mane was sent off at Manchester City on September 9, resulting in a three-match ban. Since his debut in August 2016 Liverpool average 2.2 Premier League goals with Mane in the team, compared to 1.6 goals in his absence. Klopp has signed Mohamed Salah and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain since the end of last season to add more depth to his attacking options. Egypt winger Salah has scored six in 11 games this season, making him the club´s leading scorer, but former Arsenal midfielder Oxlade-Chamberlain has been less impressive so far.
  23. A Colombian soldier inspects a coca plant at a 20 hectare plantation found by the army/File photo BOGOTA: At least six farmers protesting the removal of coca crops, the base ingredient in cocaine, were killed during a confrontation in rural southwestern Colombia, President Juan Manuel Santos said on Friday. Santos ordered further investigation into the event, which took place on Thursday and also injured 19 people. The incident occurred in Narino province, near Tumaco, a key zone for coca growing. Reports on how exactly the six people died were contradictory. The defense ministry said on Thursday that a dissident group of ex-fighters from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) rebel group forced farmers to protest against police who were removing coca crops. The dissidents then fired on the officers and launched home-made missiles, hitting the farmers, the ministry said. But regional farmers? organizations accused the police and army of firing at the civilians to break up the protest and clear the way for the manual eradication of the crops. The majority of FARC fighters demobilized under a peace deal signed last year, but some dissident units remain involved in drug trafficking and illegal mining. The FARC, now a political party, has distanced itself from the dissidents. ?We are verifying the exact way in which things occurred,? Santos said during a press conference. ?We are investigating, I don?t want to tie myself to any version of events until these investigations give us total clarity about what happened.? The events underlined the significant challenge that the drug trade represents to the peace process with the FARC, the head of the United Nations? mission in Colombia said. ?The events reinforce our conviction at the United Nations of the necessity of giving coca farmers in affected regions all the means to escape the terrible choice between extreme poverty and illegality,? mission chief Jean Arnault told journalists. Subsistence farmers have often been obliged by rebel groups, paramilitaries and crime gangs to plant and harvest coca. Some also choose to grow the crop because illegal groups will pay more for it than farmers can earn at market with other products - a tempting possibility amid dire poverty. Coca cultivation reached levels not seen for a decade last year after the government banned aerial fumigation with glyphosate, an herbicide that has been linked to cancer. The prohibition has sparked criticism from the United States, which is set to give the Andean country more than $400 million in funding help for the FARC deal. Coca is cultivated on about 188,000 hectares (464,000 acres) across Colombia. The government wants to manually eradicate 100,000 hectares this year.
  24. Danushka Gunathilaka COLOMBO: Sri Lanka Cricket Thursday slapped a six-match ban on allrounder Danushka Gunathilaka for "misconduct" during the recent series against India which the islanders lost 9-0. The cricket board had ordered an investigation last month following a complaint from team manager Asanka Gurusinghe against the 26-year-old player. Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) said Gunathilaka was also fined 20 percent of his annual contract fee for violating the board´s constitution as well as the terms of his contract. "The charges relate to misconduct and behaving in a manner unbecoming of a player, and the breach of several clauses of his contract which relate to fitness and discipline," an SLC official told AFP. Malinga left out of Sri Lanka squad for Pakistan ODIs Sri Lanka will also be without former captain Angelo Mathews, who is injured An SLC statement said Gunathilaka pleaded guilty to the charges without spelling out what exactly they were. Sri Lanka suffered the embarrassment of losing all nine international matches in their home campaign against India. Virat Kohli´s visitors took the Test series 3-0 and then won a one-day international series 5-0 before triumphing in the lone Twenty20 international by seven wickets in Colombo earlier last month. Gunathilaka has also been dropped from the squad for a five-match ODI series against Pakistan in the UAE. Gunathilaka, who made his international debut in 2015, averages 42.41 in 12 ODI matches he played this year.
  25. COX?S BAZAR: Humanitarian organisations helping Rohingya Muslim refugees in Bangladesh said on Wednesday they need $434 million over the next six months to help up to 1.2 million people, most of them children, in dire need of life-saving assistance. There are an estimated 809,000 Rohingya sheltering in Bangladesh after fleeing violence and persecution in Myanmar, more than half a million of whom have arrived since Aug. 25 to join 300,000 Rohingya who are already there. ?The Rohingya population in Cox?s Bazar is highly vulnerable, many having experienced severe trauma, and are now living in extremely difficult conditions,? Robert Watkins, U.N. resident coordinator in Bangladesh, said in a statement, referring to the area where most Rohingya are living. Bangladesh and humanitarian organizations are struggling to help the 509,000 Rohingya who have arrived since attacks by Rohingya militants in August triggered a Myanmar military offensive that the United Nations has branded ethnic cleansing. Myanmar rejects accusations of ethnic cleansing. It says its forces are fighting insurgents of the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA) who claimed responsibility for attacks on about 30 police posts and an army camp on Aug 25. The insurgents were also behind similar but smaller attacks in October last year that led to a brutal Myanmar army response triggering the flight of 87,000 Rohingya to Bangladesh. The aid agencies? plan factors in the possibility of another 91,000 refugees arriving, as the influx continues, Watkins said. ?The plan targets 1.2 million people, including all Rohingya refugees, and 300,000 Bangladeshi host communities over the next six months,? he said. Aid groups seek $434 million for Rohingya crisis for next six months. Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi has faced scathing criticism for not doing more to stop the violence, although she has no power over the security forces under a military-drafted constitution. She has condemned rights abuses and said Myanmar was ready to start a process agreed with Bangladesh in 1993 under which anyone verified as a refugee would be accepted back. But many Rohingya are pessimistic about their chances of going home, partly because few have official papers confirming their residency. Most are also wary about returning without an assurance of citizenship, which they fear could leave them vulnerable to the persecution and discrimination they have endured for years. Human Rights Watch said it had found evidence that the Myanmar military had summarily executed dozens of Rohingya in a village called Maung Nu in Rakhine state, on Aug. 27, two days after the insurgent attacks triggered the violence. The rights group said it had spoken to 14 survivors and witnesses who were now refugees in Bangladesh. They described how soldiers entered a compound where people had gathered in fear of military retaliation. ?They took several dozen Rohingya men and boys into the courtyard and then shot or stabbed them to death. Others were killed as they tried to flee,? said the rights group, which has accused Myanmar of crimes against humanity. Spokesmen for the government, the military and police did not answer their telephones and were not available for comment. Wednesday is a holiday in Myanmar. Reuters was not able to independently verify the report. The U.N. committees for women?s and children?s rights called on Myanmar to immediately stop violence in Rakhine State, saying violations ?being committed at the behest of the military and other security forces? may amount to crimes against humanity. The United States and Britain have warned that the crisis risked derailing Myanmar?s progress in its transition to democracy after decades of military rule. The World Bank said it could hit foreign investment, though it did not factor the violence into its latest forecast for Myanmar?s growth, which it cut by 0.5 percentage points for both 2017 and 2018, to 6.4 percent and 6.7 percent, respectively. The bank said businesses appeared to have delayed investment as they awaited a clearer government economic agenda.